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€100 million loan for renewable energy in Pakistan

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b40fd522ecThe European Investment Bank (EIB) has granted a €100 million loan for renewable energy in Pakistan for the construction of the Keyal Khwar Hydropower Project. A Declaratory Statement was signed by EIB Vice-President Magdalena Álvarez Arza and Pakistan’s Economic Affairs Division SEcretary Nargis Sethi, at a ceremony in Islamabad on 17 February 2014.

EIB Vice President Magdalena Alvarez, who is in charge of the EIB’s operations in Asia, said: “The European Investment Bank is committed to supporting investment in renewable energy and helping countries around the world reduce carbon emissions. At the same time the EIB is pleased to be able to support Pakistan in this important sector, addressing the increased demand of energy in the country. The investment will provide a clean and reliable supply of electric power contributing to climate change mitigation, which is a fundamental goal of the European Union.”

Secretary EAD in her remarks appreciated EIB’s financial assistance for the energy sector project, which will not only help in tackling the energy crisis but will prove to be a source of clean renewable energy. The Secretary invited EIB for participation in financing of energy efficient projects in future as well.

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Ambassador of the European Union to Pakistan Lars-Gunnar Wigemark said: "Coming shortly after the granting of GSP+ trade preferences, the visit by the EIB, which is the Investment bank of the EU, shows how the EU is committed to expand its investments in Pakistan, especially in the energy sector."

The Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA), which will construct the plant, has considerable experience with similar hydropower pants. It is estimated that the construction period will be four years starting from January 2013.

The project consists of a 128 MW run-of-river hydropower plant with a small 1.5 ha reservoir for daily regulation. The aim of the scheme is to provide a clean and reliable supply of energy, thus avoiding significant volumes of CO2 emissions. The project will feed the renewable energy into Pakistan’s national power grid, generating significant economic benefits.

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The project is also receiving financial support from KfW and has been structured under the mutual reliance initiative. This collaborative approach will make it possible to exploit synergies between the two financial institutions.

The EIB is providing this loan under the current lending mandate for Asia and Latin America (2007-2013). The project will contribute to climate change mitigation and environmental sustainability in Pakistan, which are key priorities of the European Union and also key operational priorities of the EIB.

This is the fifth project supported by the EIB in Pakistan. Since it began lending in Asia in 1993, the EIB has provided more than €5.1 billion for long-term investment projects, including €2.4bn in the energy sector.

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Kazakh president sets out five priorities for #Kazakhstan’s 'Third Stage of Modernization' 

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In his annual address to the nation, Nursultan Nazarbayev, the president of Kazakhstan, announced five main priorities as part of what he described as “Kazakhstan’s third stage of modernization”. The priorities are aimed at ensuring economic growth and supporting the country to become one of the top 30 most developed countries in the world by 2050.

The five priorities are: Acceleration of technological modernization of the economy, improved business environment, macroeconomic stability, improved quality of human capital and institutional reforms, including improved security and more action to tackle corruption.

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President Nazarbayev said in his annual address: “I am setting the task of ensuring the implementation of the Third Modernisation of Kazakhstan. It is necessary to create a new model of economic growth that will ensure the country's global competitiveness.”

He added: “This modernization is not a plan to combat current global challenges, but a reliable bridge to the future, to meet the objectives of Kazakhstan 2050 Strategy. It will be carried out on the basis of the 100 Concrete Steps Plan of the Nation.”

The Head of State also instructed the Government to developa package of measures for the technological re-equipment of basic industries by 2025.

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The annual address followed a special announcement given by the President last week, in which he set out bold plansto increase the powers of parliament. President Nazarbayev stated that these constitutional reforms are aimed at furthering the democratic development of Kazakhstan, as the Government will be accountable to parliament.

President Nursultan Nazarbayev has proposed a constitutional reform aimed at furthering the democratic development of Kazakhstan. During a special televised address to the nation on 25 January, the President announced a number of functions that would be transferred either to the Government or Parliament. Public discussions on the proposed constitutional reforms will take place for the next month, concluding on 26 February. After this, the reforms will be presented to Parliament.